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COX V. UNITED STATES, 332 U. S. 442 (1947)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Cox v. United States, 332 U.S. 442 (1947)

Cox v. United States

No. 66

Argued October 14-15, 1947

Decided November 24, 1947*

332 U.S. 442


Petitioners, Jehovah's Witnesses, were convicted in prosecutions for absence without leave from a civilian public service camp, in violation of § 11 of the Selective Training and Service Act of 1940. The defense in each case was that the local board's classification of the petitioner as a conscientious objector, rather than as an exempt minister of religion was invalid.


1. Judgments of the Circuit Court of Appeals affirming the convictions are here affirmed. Pp. 332 U. S. 443-444, 332 U. S. 455.

2. Having exhausted their remedies in the selective service process and complied with the orders of the local boards to report to camp, petitioners were entitled to raise the issue of the validity of their classifications in their criminal trials for absence without leave. P. 332 U. S. 448.

3. The local boards' denial to the defendants of the classification of minister of religion is final unless it is without basis in fact. Pp. 332 U. S. 448-452.

4. The question whether the local boards' denial to the defendants of the classification of minister of religion was without basis in fact is a question of law for determination by the court. Pp. 332 U. S. 452-453.

5. In the criminal trials, review of the local boards' classifications was properly limited to the evidence which was before the boards and upon which they acted. Pp. 332 U. S. 453-455.

157 F.2d 787 affirmed.

Petitioners were convicted in the District Court of violating the Selective Training and Service Act of 1940. The convictions were affirmed by the Circuit Court of Appeals. 157 F.2d 787. This Court granted certiorari. 331 U.S. 801. Affirmed, p. 332 U. S. 455. chanroblesvirtualawlibrary

Page 332 U. S. 443

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